View Full Version : Mini-Z racing @ Import Showoff Houston 9/24!

2005.02.03, 02:51 PM
Well it's official. After speaking with my buddies that run Import Showoff, they have agreed to add us to their list of attractions at the Import Showoff car show at the Reliant Center on September 24, 2005! I will continue to keep everyone updated on the details here on this thread, but I just wanted to give people advanced warning to mark their calendars!

2005.02.03, 03:36 PM
Ok, logistically speaking, having an EXHIBITION race at a car show is typically a nightmare. Here's a short list of potential pitfalls from my experience:

1) ticket prices - door price tickets to these events are usually $20-25, which is pretty steep. To help compensate for this, we usually try not to charge a race entry fee. I have arranged for a small number of free passes to award to the winners of our HMSR Points Series. That should give all of you something else to shoot for! I am TRYING to negotiate reduced ticket prices for a few select individuals who volunteer to attend/race the ENTIRE event. Make no mistake, you will be there to work as a representative throughout the day. No getting distracted by the booty contest. :rolleyes: The remainder of our racers who are interested in attending are more than welcome to show up and hop in a race at any time. There are usually flyers around town about a month before the show that offer $5 off the ticket price. Regardless, you get admission to the show so enjoy that during the free time!

2) electricity - "renting" a plug outlet at Reliant Center is not cheap. To all our racers, I would HIGHLY recommend charging ALL of your batteries before coming to the event. I am looking into making a portable system that would supply 120VAC from a car/marine battery to power IC3 charging banks. Hopefully, that should keep everyone's batteries peaked throughout the day.

3) location/traffic - at previous events, the space that we required to set up a proper 1/10 track usually meant that we were buried off in the corner of the show. We still got decent traffic, but the location was far from optimal. Now with the RCP track and the small size of the Mini-Z, we SHOULD be able to negotiate for some prime real estate to get everyone and their mom to pass by our track setup. We also don't have to worry about trying to get traction on that crap concrete floor... :D I AM still worried about pit space and tables. I would recommend that we bring our own as again, Reliant makes you pay through the nose.

4) noise/communication - if you've ever been to an import car show, every booth has a DJ/stereo/etc blasting techno or rap music. It's pretty da**ed annoying. I'm thinking a bullhorn would help communicate with the racers to help keep everything on schedule. That way we can ALWAYS have at least a few people running on the track. Needless to say, down time is boring for the crowd.

5) audience interaction/participation - do you want someone driving your $1000+ race rig? Granted that Mini-Z's are much less expensive, that question always makes me cringe. Thanks to Danny and Pat, we should have the HSMR loaner/rental cars available for demonstration runs! This level of audience participation promises to bring new people into the hobby like never before! Sign-up sheets should keep the demos relatively organized, and we can schedule "demo heats" inbetween the race rounds. One thing I've noticed in the past is just how quickly a crowd will clear out once there's no one on the track. It's like someone farted. I am also working on some flyers to hand out to help promote the local race scene (HMSR) during the short break periods in between people running on the track. Just having something to hand out often breaks the ice and prompts a barrage of questions from someone that normally would have just walked off.

6) setup/teardown - the HMSR crew has gotten very good at deploying the RCP track. The problem lies in the pit area setup and obtaining the barriers and other onsite equipment during peak hours. Behind the scenes, there's always SOMETHING going wrong at these shows, and it's like pulling teeth trying to get an extra barrier here or there if you ask at the wrong time. At the end of the day, we will all be pretty spent. It's a very draining experience with the combination of standing and smiling all day compounded by the constant throbbing music. Bring painkillers.

7) adult content - I'm always surprised by the number of small children at these events given that there are scantily clad women everywhere, not to mention the various "contests". Mini-Z is a very family-oriented hobby, so please keep this in mind before you invite the whole Cub Scout troop.

8) theft - not something you want to think about, but a good number of the attendees at these shows are not people that you would invite over for a slumber party. Barriers and proper setup/organization will help keep your shiny toys your shiny toys.

The upside is that you get exposure to a HUGE number of new potential racers that otherwise never would have been interested in R/C. I think that the combination of price, performance, quality and accessibility of these little guys will be a pleasant surprise to most people who typically shy away from R/C. Now for those of you racing at these events, you are defacto ambassadors of our hobby. You are there to put on a show, so be fast, but be NICE. Luckily, I've noticed that Mini-Z racers are usually less whiny than their counterparts in larger scales. :D

2005.02.03, 04:07 PM
Another plus is that I know "Miss Showoff" and associated staff, so we should have one HE** of a trophy girl. :D

2005.02.03, 09:20 PM
Sounds intresting Joe accept that crappy music part.Might consider our own corner to help with that and just plain being able to talk to people as they come by.I,m I gonna have to pressure wash again :rolleyes:

2005.02.03, 11:20 PM
I've had some experience with car shows before, having helped run a local car club's booth at several car shows. What you're planning is gonna be an adventure. Looking at your list of concerns, it looks like you're gonna be well prepared though.

Events like these usually allow for a few people to get in to help run the booth. Since you're bringing something to the show that might attract some people, the organizers might be able to let a larger group of your volunteers into the show. You might even want to get your local hobby store to provide some support.

Anyways, good luck with the planning.

2005.02.03, 11:39 PM
fish - thanks for your input! I've done the tracks/races at car shows in the past and I'm trying to make sure that we make this one the best one yet! This will be the first time we will be running Mini-Z instead of 1/10 and I think that opens up a ton of new possibilities and the opportunity to screw them up too... :D BTW, I'm going to be in Whistler next week on vacation. Any good Mini-Z places in Vancouver? hehehe! Probably won't have time to visit though... :(

One thing I forgot to mention in my list:

9) security - often times, our pitboxes get checked pretty thoroughly at the door. Make sure you don't have any blades on you.

trey - I almost forgot about that! I remember spraying WD40 too! We were about THIS close to breaking out the VHT! hahahaha! :D

Q ball
2005.02.04, 10:15 AM
What about small blades like exacto knives?

2005.02.04, 10:56 AM
That's exactly what I'm talking about. Don't bring them unless you plan on throwing them away. Scissors are even frowned upon sometimes, but I hope that we can work with the security to allow a little leniency. I used to sneak a couple of blades in my shoe, but really with the Mini-Z stuff, you shouldn't need them.

2005.02.04, 01:49 PM
whistler? I'd forego the rc for some sliding down a massive vertical drop on a laminated piece of wood...

2005.02.04, 02:27 PM
The thing is that I'm so broke that I'll be busy making snowmen at the base instead of paying for lift tickets and a demo... :(

2005.02.04, 02:32 PM
The thing is that I'm so broke that I'll be busy making snowmen at the base instead of paying for lift tickets and a demo... :(
oh man...being there and not able to ride would be serious torture for me...I couldn't do it. ;)

2005.02.04, 03:05 PM
I'll manage to scrape something together... :D

2005.02.04, 03:09 PM
I'll manage to scrape something together... :D
you better...I might have to go snowboarding this weekend...40 degrees after snowing twice this week!

2005.02.04, 09:42 PM
BTW, I'm going to be in Whistler next week on vacation. Any good Mini-Z places in Vancouver? hehehe! Probably won't have time to visit though... :(

Not much going on mini-z wise. There's a couple of shops with nice tracks. About 6 guys run regularly on Friday nights at the one I go to in Richmond, that's about 4-5 minutes south of Vancouver. But yeah, you're not gonna be missing much.

Have fun in Whistler. Sorry for the off-topic post.

2005.02.06, 12:33 PM
Awesome Joe! Make sure you take the MZR banner, and let us know if you need a giveaway or anything! :cool:

2005.03.11, 07:53 PM
I cant wait man only thing though is space.Will there be tables set up or whats the deal? :cool: Team Zeinj

2005.03.11, 08:08 PM
I think you should have a contest for a free mini z's or cash and parts.A lot more people would come :cool: Team Zeinj

2005.03.11, 08:09 PM
Will yawl have tables already set-up or what :cool: Team Zeinj

2005.03.13, 02:50 PM
THRC is working on getting the tables and stuff. This will be an awesome event to go to! I'm working with Mini-ZRacer.com to get some giveaways and other fun things going. Spread the word! That's the best publicity we can get. Xmods, iWavers, Mini-Z's are all welcome!

2005.03.13, 09:48 PM
dont forget to post pics....

2005.04.25, 01:14 PM
Well I didn't show up to practice at Mobility Plus this weekend, because I was working at Drift Showoff. The upside is that I can now confirm that the lovely Mercedes Terrell (featured in Xtreme R/C along with a host of other magazines) will be one of the trophy girls at our demo race. WELL WORTH THE PRICE OF ADMISSION... :D

That's me in the background with the cowboy hat. D*mn I'm good looking... :D

2005.05.12, 02:47 PM
...Bumping thread...

My company's gotten very involved in an import show coming up at the end of June, and just recently, they've asked about putting on a smaller scale R/C exhibition. I've got some wide L's, and know a couple others who have some mini tile tracks, so now we're in the planning stages of getting this set up. This thread's gonna be a huge help.

2005.05.13, 10:28 AM
AWESOME! I hope it goes well for you guys. Let me know if you need any help or advice.